A South African New year

It is almost New Years eve and I am very excited. I am excited about what 2015 will bring. I am thankful for the year that’s passed but cannot wait for 2015.

It is summer in South Africa and it is HOT.

My hubby and I are going to spend a quiet evening at home and wait for the new year.

We will have a braai. But not any kind of braai we will have a snoek braai. A snoek is a fish that is found in the waters of the Southern Hemisphere.

Here is a snoek braai recipe


  • 1  snoek
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 150 ml apricot jam
  • 100 ml butter or olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon


Using a small pot on the fire, or on a stove, lightly fry the onions.  Then add the apricot jam and lemon juice.

A snoek should be braaied ‘open’. Smear the skin side of the snoek with oil so that it does not stick to the grid and now place in the grid, skin side down. Grind salt and pepper onto the flesh side of the snoek and lightly pat it onto the meat. Pack tomatoes on the open snoek. Then add the apricot jam and onion mix.

Place the grill on a medium fire.

Braaiing time is about 15-20 minutes. If the flesh flakes, the snoek is ready.

Snoek is traditionaly eaten with soetpatats. (sweet sweet potato)


Sweet potatoes




  • Peel sweet potatoes and cut into  blocks
  • Place butter and sugar in pot over medium heat.
  • Stir continuously till the sugar is lightly caramelised
  • Add sweet potato pieces, sprinkle with salt to your taste.
  • Turn the pieces once after about 15 – 20 min

Happy New year from South Africa!Flag_of_South_Africa.svg

Take a look at this Pinterest board it has a lot of pins and ideas for new years eve.

Christmas in Africa 25 December 2014

Christmas day was a real blessing. We came together as a family and had a braai. Ons the menu was beer braai chicken, sweet potato, gammon, ham and potato salad (among other things) My husband made the most amazing bread! I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and that you don’t forget the real reason for Christmas. Jesus Christ was born and He died for our sins.

How did you celebrate Christmas?

Christmas in South Africa…Recipes…Beer braai chicken

Beer braai chicken

Preparation time: 10 -20mins
Cooking time: 45-60 mins

  • Salt and other seasoning
  • 1 Can of beer
  • 1 whole chicken
Drink half of the beer and place the chicken on top it, standing up on the coals. It takes about an hour to cook. Sometimes the flesh on the thighs appear pink this is because some smoking takes place.

Cut up the meat and enjoy!

Braai day vs Chesa Nyama day

Heritage Day 2014It was heritage day in South Africa yesterday. Some people call it Braai day. I saw a lot of controversial discussions on Twitter and other social media regarding this issue. Some people seems to be offended  about the fact that some people call it Braai day, they seem to think that it takes something away from Heritage day. I thought about this and here is my response. I’m giving MY opinion on why I support both.

South Africa has many different cultures and it is very diverse. I teach children that speak (among others)  the following languages at home: Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans, Tswana, Pedi, Shona, English. How do you celebrate everyone’s heritage at once and give everyone ample opportunity to display their rich culture. One thing we have in common is that all of us have to eat and most of us like to cook outside on the fire. Some of us call this event  Chesa Nyama and others calls it Braai.  It creates opportunity to talk around a fire about what is important to me and what I can learn from your culture? I That is why I support both. I see nothing wrong with attending a cultural celebration (where everyone gets a chance to display something about their culture) and having a Chesa Nyama afterwards.  Maybe we should stop calling it Braai day and then start calling it Chesa Nyama day and then alternate every year. Yesterday was Braai day and next year we will have Chesa Nyama day. Maybe this way everyone will be happy?

I am so lucky to live in South Africa and be part of this diverse melting pot of cultures! I am positive about our country and it’s future and am happy that we can celebrate our heritage.

Boerewors (4)

For a deep study of the history of food in SA I want to commend the book of H.W. Classens. Die geskiedenis van Boerekos. The publisher is Protea Boekehuis. Pta 2006. It is a short version of a thesis for a D Phil degree at the university of Pretoria.

We are on the subject of meat and have discussed Biltong.
Another treat is Boerewors on an open fire. Barbeque is different than a Braai. A Braai in SA is a man thing with Castle Lager in the hand. A braai will be before or after a rugby match.

Coming back to Boerewors. The Persians 500 BC already made a type of sausage. But it could never have tasted like Boerewors and everybody believes that they have the secret recipe.  National competitions are held yearly to find the best Boerewors.

And then the Braai of the wors. First they make a  fire with the best wood. (Also a man secret). Then the gathering of men with beer in the hand staring in this fire.

When the fire is nearly ready the discussion about the heat is started. Hands are held over the fire. Usually it is decided it is still too hot and then they wait and stare again. As soon as the leader decides the fire is ready there is a call for the wors to be brought to the fire while everybody still stares. The wors is placed on the fire the way the leader preferred. Every man has a very specific way of putting meat on the fire.  Now for the next stage.

This is also a very important ritual.  Only the leader has tongs. The other form a closed circle around the fire and stare. Every now and then the leader will poke the wors or move it slightly around. It will be turned once and a piece will be lifted from the fire and with great concentration tasted for readiness. As soon it is ready a call will go out for a container.

Everyone gather round and eat this great South African dish.